This creamy Waldorf Salad recipe includes fruit, celery, walnuts, and a wonderful refreshing sweet dressing. Serve in bowls or on Bibb lettuce. Perfect for brunch, lunch, summertime, the holidays, or any time!
Creamy Waldorf Salad Recipe
Including tart apples, grapes, toasted nuts, and a creamy sweet dressing, a Waldorf Salad has so much flavor and texture. Perfectly refreshing on a hot summer day, but also great for bunches, bridal showers, and a simple side to go with any dinner. It’s wonderful.
If you love our popular Creamy Delicatessen Fruit Salad, you’ll love this salad too.
What is Waldorf Salad?
This salad was first served at the Waldorf Astoria Hotel in 1893 for a charity event, thus the name. Then in 1896, the salad appeared in Oscar of the Waldorf’s Cookbook, by Oscar Tschirky, who was the maître d’ of the hotel and credited for this salad creation.
Originally the salad only included apples, celery, mayonnaise, salt and pepper. The grapes and nuts came much later.
For Waldorf salad ingredients, you only need a short list of items.
(Don’t miss the detailed printable recipe card below.)
- Waldorf salad dressing – cream cheese, plain Greek yogurt, mayonnaise, and granulated sugar.
- Fruit and vegetables – Granny Smith apples, red grapes, and celery.
- Walnuts – Ideally toasted for added flavor.
- Bibb Lettuce (optional) – This salad can be served in bowls or on lettuce.
Over the years, like so many classic recipes, it’s been altered. Everyone has their favorite version of the Waldorf Salad! This is my favorite, but here are some ways to change it up, if you prefer.
- Use additional yogurt instead of mayo. If you do, though, I would suggest adding a touch of honey to balance out the tart yogurt flavor.
- Try it with pears. Swap out the apples with pears for a different, but delicious flavor.
- Don’t like celery? Replace the celery with jicama so you still have the crunch.
- Add in raisins. This is a nice salad addition for a little natural sweetness.
- Add some protein. Toss in some chopped up roasted chicken breast for more of a meal.
NOTE: Keep in mind that if you add ingredients, instead of replacing, you may need to make extra dressing.
How to Make Waldorf Salad
It’s so easy to make a Waldorf salad!
(Don’t miss the detailed printable recipe card and video below.)
- Make the dressing. Simply whisk together all the dressing ingredients until combined and smooth.
- Add ingredients. Add in the fruit, celery, and toss to coat.
- Serve. Enjoy right away in a bowl or over lettuce.
Make the dressing super creamy
Video: Waldorf Salad
- Can you make Waldorf salad in advance? You can, but this salad is best served the same day you make it. The longer it sits, the dressing will separate and start to get runny.
- How long does Waldorf salad keep? As mentioned above, this salad is best served the same day you make it. However, it will keep in the fridge, in an airtight container up to 3 days. Stir to incorporate everything again before serving.
- Can you freeze Waldorf salad? No, sorry. Once thawed the fruit will be mushy and the dressing will be a runny mess.
More Classic Salad Recipes:
Creamy Waldorf Salad
- 1 & 1/2 ounces cream cheese , softened
- 1/4 cup plain Greek yogurt
- 1/4 cup mayonnaise
- 1/4 cup granulated sugar
- 3 medium Granny Smith apples , cubed
- 1 cup red grapes , cut in half
- 3/4 cup sliced celery
- 1/2 cup chopped toasted walnuts
- Bibb lettuce , for serving, optional
- In a large bowl with an electric mixer, beat the cream cheese until creamy and lump-free. Mix in the yogurt, mayonnaise, and sugar until combined and smooth.
- Add in the apples, grapes, celery, and walnuts; toss to coat.
- Serve in bowls or on Bibb lettuce and enjoy!